While my original background is in formal semantics and pragmatics, much of my ongoing research involves the use of
experimental methods from psycholinguistics in studying phenomena related to meaning in natural language. For example, I have investigated how presupposed content (i.e., content that is taken for granted by discourse participants) is processed, using the self-paced reading paradigm (Schwarz 2007). Current research, in collaboration with Sonja Tiemann at the University of Tuebingen, extends this work by looking at a broader range of expressions and by using eye tracking in reading (Schwarz and Tiemann 2012). Definite descriptions (expressions of the form 'the NP') are another area of interest of mine, and I have recently run a series of visual world eye tracking studies investigating how the referent of these expressions is identified, given varying contextual information, in real time. Other recent projects include work on collective vs. distributive interpretations of noun phrases (with Dimka Atanassov, Christine Boylan, and John Trueswell), as well as conversational implicatures with quantifiers and modals (the latter with Dimka Atanassov and John Trueswell). As my work is based on a highly interdisciplinary perspective, I am always looking for connections (to both people and research) in fields beyond linguistics, such as psychology, philosophy, and computer science.
LING 255: Formal Semantics and Cognitive Science
Seminar on Experimental Semantics & Pragmatics
2012 Rejecting statements with non-referring definites - experimental support for a presuppositional view (submitted)
2012 (with Sonja Tiemann): Presupposition Processing - The Case of German wieder. In: Maria Aloni, Vadim Kimmelman, Floris Roelofsen, Galit Weidman Sassoon, Katrin Schulz and Matthijs Westera (eds.) 18th Amsterdam Colloquium, LNCS Series, FoLLI, Springer. (to appear)
2012 Situation Pronouns in Determiner Phrases. Natural Language Semantics ( DOI: 10.1007/s11050-012-9086-1)
2010 Affective 'this'. [Christopher Potts and Florian Schwarz] Linguistic Issues in LanguageTechnology 3(5):1-30.
2009 The pragmatics of expressive content: Evidence from large corpora. [Noah Constant, Christopher Davis, Christopher Potts, and Florian Schwarz]. Sprache und Datenverar-beitung 33(1-2):5-21.
2007 Processing Presupposed Content. Journal of Semantics 24(4): 373-416.